Curbing the Menace of Terrorism
- 16 Nov 2022
- 8 min read
This editorial is based on “How we can further our efforts in curbing terror financing” which was published in Indian Express on 16/11/2022. It talks about the Terror financing and challenges related to it.
Terrorism looms large over the world today. Amorphous terror groups, newer cyber linked terrorism, increasing lone wolf attacks are all adding to the ominous threats of violence. India has borne the brunt of terrorism and has witnessed serious loss of life and property in senseless violent explosions in large cities in the past few decades.
As the world shrinks with technological and communication changes, terrorists, weapons and funds are also able to move across national boundaries easily. International co-operation between law enforcement authorities in this area is a sine qua non for combating such cross border challenges.
What is India Doing to Combat the Threat of Terrorism?
- In the wake of the 26/11 terrorist attack. In January 2009, the National Investigation Agency was established to deal with terrorist crimes.
- In India, the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Amendment Act is the primary anti-terrorism law.
- To gather information related to security, the National Intelligence Grid (NATGRID) has been established.
- An operational hub has been created for the National Security Guard to ensure a rapid response to terrorist attacks.
What are the International Initiatives to Counter Terrorism?
What are the Challenges Related to Terrorism in India?
- No Global Definition of Terrorism: There are no universally accepted definitions for what constitutes terrorism, so it is hard to classify a particular activity as a terrorist activity, which provides terrorists with an edge and allows some countries to remain silent and veto any action at global institutions.
- Expanding Web of Terrorism: The Internet provides a relatively unregulated and unrestricted place where terrorists can craft and disseminate propaganda through seemingly limitless numbers of websites and social media platforms, tailoring their pitch so as to target thousands of potential new recruits to join their organization and further their cause.
- Terror Financing: According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank, criminals launder an estimated two to nearly four trillion dollars each year. Fund movements by terrorists have also been concealed through charities and alternative remittance systems.
- It taints the international financial system and erodes public trust in the integrity of the system.
- Furthermore, the lack of regulation of crypto currency could make it a breeding ground for terrorists.
- Bio-Terrorism: Biotechnology is boon for mankind but it is also a substantial threat because small amounts of biotic agents can be effortlessly hidden, transported and discharged into vulnerable populations.
- Tropical agricultural pathogens or pests can also be used as anticrop agents to hamper food security worldwide.
- Cyber Attack: The world is moving towards a digital village where data is the new oil, terrorists use unlawful attacks in a country’s cyberspace, networks and use the information to intimidate or coerce a government or its people in furtherance of political or social objectives.
What Should be the Way Forward?
- Developing Cyber-Defence Mechanism: A holistic approach for dealing with cyber terrorism is necessary, whether it's conducting cyber search operations or extending the scope of countermeasures against cyber attacks.
- A clear public posture on cyber defence will boost citizen confidence in the government thus enabling a more engaging, stable and secure cyber ecosystem.
- Global Counter Terrorism Measures: Terrorism in all its forms and manifestations should be condemned. The international community should rise above political differences and defeat the challenge of terrorism.
- Accepting a universal definition of terrorism and global sanctions against nations that are state sponsors of terrorism can pave a way for peaceful world order.
- Capacity Building: India should move in the direction of specialisation of military to fight cross-border terrorism ensuring co-ordination among the intelligence and security agencies to check infiltration of terror activity.
- Also in order to have speedy trials, India also needs to enhance its National Criminal Justice system and implement strict legal protocol against terrorism
- Curbing Terror Financing: There is a need to strengthen laws that require banks to perform due diligence on their customers and to report suspicious transactions to prevent terrorism. Also, India can move towards regulating cryptocurrency.
- India to host “No Money for Terror” Conference in Delhi would be a step in this direction.
- Reducing Youth's Exposure to Terrorism: Given the important role of educational establishments in promoting the values of non-violence, peaceful coexistence and tolerance, education must feature prominently in counter radicalization programs.
- Also, undertaking policies to tackle economic and social inequalities will help in deterring disgruntled youth from being lured towards terrorism.
Drishti Mains Question
Discuss the evolution of terrorism with technological advancement. Also, suggest measures that should be adopted to curb the menace of Terrorism.